Tuesday, April 10, 2007


Here's a little something that's been on my mind. I've been watching the folks at Starbucks closely and I may have stumbled onto something.

Imagine you're a barista. You're back there all day mixing drinks for people in the name of rapid caffeination, and you love your job because you're getting top-shelf health insurance. And also because they're always playing hip, new tunes. You finish off each complex beverage with a flourish because you imagine yourself as Tom Cruise in Cocktail, slinging flavored syrup bottles around and juggling plastic cups like a circus clown. It's big fun, all shift long.

And after you make each steaming, frothing batch of sweetened morning goodness, you grab a plastic lid and snap that bad boy on the top of the cup. And that's when you notice something. In order to snap that lid on evenly and efficiently, you actually have to cup your entire palm over the top of it and push down. The meat of your hand and your sticky, sugary fingers press firmly all around the top to ensure it is firmly applied. Yes, you are, in essence, a germ factory - dispensing mild illness with every beverage you so carefully prepare for your unsuspecting victims.

I've been watching the folks at Starbucks, and you definitely get a handful of extra love with every cup you order. So before you raise that tiny little drink slot to your lips, you may want to consider giving the lid a good wipe-down. Or risk inviting a fresh brew of bacteria in for open swim.


Anonymous said...

Are we really that fearful of germs? Do we really need to be so antiseptic that our bodies never build up any effect defense against bacteria? Do we all need to live in plastic bubbles?

AYNtK said...

Wow. I'd say there's a big difference between sterilizing everything you come in contact with and practicing a little hygiene and self awareness. I bet you don't wash your hands after you crap, either.

As hard as we try, we cannot avoid bacteria, and indeed, much of what we cannot see is actually good for us. But let's acknowledge that there are very simple things we can do to help prevent the spread of communicable illnesses - one of which is to be wary of the things we elect to put our mouths on.

I will raise my next cup of Joe to you...here's to your health!

Anonymous said...

my co-worker actually washes her plastic lid when she gets to the office...i am still fearful of doing that thinking it is better to get my bacteria in small doses that my body can fight off rather than trying to hide from all the germs and getting blasted from something out of nowhere. the strong shall survive. and i do wash occassionally after the bathroom...